Love Serenade

December 22, 2014 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | AUSTRALIANIA, Comedy Film, THUMBNAIL REVIEWS |

(Dir. Shirley Barrett) (1996) There is simply something fundamentally wrong with Dimity and Vicki-Ann, lonely-heart sisters in Sunray, Queensland, back of nowhere.  Why the wheelchair?  Why the obsession with lounge lizard Ken Sherry?  Why are they so obviously mad as hatters?  Why does Sherry eat no fish yet has a giant marlin mounted on the wall?  Why all the casseroles left on his doorstep? Why did he leave big time radio and TV in Brisbane?  Why does he quote “Desiderata” (with due respect to Max Ehrmann, the most pretentious farrago ever twaddled)? Are there killer fish or black holes in…

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December 22, 2014 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | Drama Film, THUMBNAIL REVIEWS |

(Dir. Peter Glenville) (1964) Henry II raises his Saxon friend to Archbishop against his friend’s very advice and then asks: who will rid me of him?  Adapted from the Anouilh play, this is terrific, brilliantly shot and souped-up by Richard Burton as Becket and Peter O’Toole as the King.  Burton captures the saint’s worldliness and stoic integrity that seduced and then baffled his monarch; O’Toole makes Henry authentic, likeable yet murderous.  

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Joe Cocker and Bob Dylan

December 22, 2014 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | Modern Music, Ulalume |

Image courtesy of Eddie

Christmas 2014 – and what have you done?  Gluttony, jealousy, wrath…getting drunk and falling down…presents, presents, presents.  P is listening to (& loving) his new vinyl (!) record, ‘Lost on the River: the new basement tapes’, featuring various artists adding melody and shape to some lyrics of Bob Dylan stuck in a drawer since 1967.  Best so far: ‘Down on the Bottom’, ‘Kansas City’, ‘Liberty Street’, ‘Florida Key’ and the title track (# 12).  Maybe a review in the fullness of time (at least 20 more listens first).  Abject lesson to all: don’t throw away your turntable!  Never discard your…

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The Apartment

December 22, 2014 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | Classic Film, THUMBNAIL REVIEWS |

(Dir. Billy Wilder) (1960) David Shipman (“The Great Movie Stars” 1982) wrote the best thumbnail review for this: “bitter-sweet, tragical-comical, sordid and sad”.  Jack Lemmon gives an immortal performance as the heel who finds his spine in the last reel, an insurance schmuck who lets superiors use his handily located apartment for sexual rendezvous, till he falls in love with Big Boss Fred MacMurray’s latest conquest. Only when midnight chimes on New Year’s Eve does she realize she loves him back.  Features great, authentic playing by MacMurray as the ogre (Mr Sheldrake), a lovely turn by Shirley MacLaine as the…

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Twelfth Night

December 21, 2014 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | Plays, THEATRE, THUMBNAIL REVIEWS |

Twelfth Night or What You Will (William Shakespeare) (1601-2) Adelaide 18 December 2014 TVC saw a theatrical reading of the Bard’s best comedy on a blustery summer evening in Victoria Square, the Square expensively revamped with little evidence of revamp.  Yet kudos to the Council for the initiative of returning some varnished culture to the city’s jaded heart.  Twelfth Night, produced by Holly Myers (also an excellent Viola), was played as Harold Bloom prescribed – “at the frenetic tempo that befits this company of zanies and antics.”  Unlike much of the cast’s aspect in Trevor Nunn’s (1996) sombre film, here…

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